The Holcim Awards Gold 2011 for North America and USD 100,000 was awarded to the Arctic Food Network (AFN) regional food-gathering nodes and logistics infrastructure for the scattered Inuit communities in Northern Canada. The project by Lateral Office / InfraNet Lab based in Toronto and Princeton, New Jersey, enables a better distribution of local foods, serves as a series of bases for the reinforcement of traditional hunting, and also establishes new foundations for a sustainable, more independent economy.
Holcim Awards Silver went to a two-level zero energy certified school building design to be constructed on multiple campuses throughout Los Angeles. The project led by architects Swift Lee Office of Los Angeles uses “off-the shelf” components and modular panels to create a pre-fabricated system that features a double-layered façade for solar, acoustic, and environmental control and achieves a climate-responsive solution for each site.
Holcim Awards Bronze was presented to Julie Snow Architects of Minneapolis, for a border control station on the US frontier to Canada at Van Buren, Maine. The approach meets a range of stringent regulations for safety, operation and durability, sets zero net energy and water saving targets, and yet is a highly aesthetic structure marking the national frontier.
You can see more info and images on the winners after the break. For a complete list of the winners including the acknowlodgement prizes and “next generation” prizes please click here.
Holcim Awards Gold 2011 North America Regional food-gathering nodes and logistics network, Iqaluit, NU, Canada
Type of project: Landscape, urban design and infrastructure projects Start of construction: May 2012 Main author: Mason White, Lateral Office / InfraNet Lab, Toronto, ON, Canada Further authors: Lola Sheppard and Fionn Byrne, Lateral Office / InfraNet Lab, Toronto, ON, Canada, and Nikole Bouchard, Lateral Office / InfraNet Lab, Princeton, NJ, USA
This socio-architectural project to create an Arctic Food Network (AFN) in Canada’s high arctic territory of Nunavut is a model to overcome the dependence of the Inuit community on expensive processed food products imported from the south. These foods have compromised the traditional diet centered on hunting and gathering of food provided by nature across a yearly cycle. The project responds to thorough research on the poor living conditions and health of the Inuit, and on the calendars, regional ecologies and transportation networks that are highly influenced by nature and tradition in these specific and extreme climatic and geographical conditions. The project intends to secure mobility between the scattered Inuit communities, allow a better distribution of local foods and serve as a series of bases for the reinforcement of traditional hunting – while also establishing new foundations for a sustainable, more independent economy.
Snowmobiles using their pre-existing trails provide the only feasible form of ground connection. To accomplish this network, a series of small hub facilities is introduced along the tracks, acknowledging the Inuit tradition of temporary enclosure in a cold climate. These multi-functional structures provide shelter but also act as data transmission centers, ecological management stations, and cultural centers which help to integrate the Inuit community internally and externally. The modest structures respond to local conditions, whether the site is on land, water/ice or the tidal fringe. Construction is based upon easy-to-assemble modules that also utilize abundant materials on site: rock aggregate and snow/ice.
Holcim Awards Silver 2011 North America Zero net energy school building, Los Angeles, CA, USA
Type of project: Building and civil engineering works Start of construction: January 2012 Main author: Gloria Lee, Swift Lee Office, Los Angeles, CA, USA Further authors: Nathan Swift, Swift Lee Office, Los Angeles, CA, USA, Peter Simmonds, IBE Consulting Engineers, Sherman Oaks, CA, USA, Steve Ratchye, Thornton Tomasetti Inc., San Francisco, CA, USA, and Tom Waldron, Butler Manufacturing Company, Santa Ana, CA, USA
The public school project is designed as a prototype to be built on multiple campuses throughout Los Angeles. Its aim is an economical, flexible and yet, in its spatial concept, ambitious design that can be adjusted to different pedagogical models and learning styles. The two-level building can accommodate up to 500 students and may also be reconfigured for other communal functions. The sustainability concept intends to reach a net zero energy building standard and achieve LEED Platinum rating.
Moreover the authors believe in “the power of environment as our third teacher”. The construction comprises a “readymade kit-of-parts assembled from off-the-shelf components”, which, in alignment with the prototype character of the concept, can be composed site-specifically. They include modular panels to create a double façade for solar, acoustic, and environmental control to achieve a climate-responsive solution on each site. Additionally, other state-of-the-art features are applied successfully to reach a fully integrated technical system. The pre-fabricated structural system allows a column free interior, supplementing the desired flexibility. Secondly it helps to reduce the duration of construction, traffic, waste, and cost.
Holcim Awards Bronze 2011 North America Energy and water efficient border control station, Van Buren, ME, USA
Type of project: Building and civil engineering works Start of construction: November 2011 Main author: Julie Snow, Julie Snow Architects, Minneapolis, MN, USA Further author: Matthew Kreilich, Julie Snow Architects, Minneapolis, MN, USA
This project has an explicit function as a border control station on the US frontier to Canada, thus needing to meet a range of stringent regulations for safety, operation and durability and yet provide a welcoming appearance to visitors. Efficiency demands an enhanced capacity for visual surveillance to enable as few as two officers to operate the station. Harsh weather conditions during winter require a strong canopy roof to provide shelter for exterior control operations. Beyond the fulfillment of the technical requirements the project pursues a well-designed reconciliation with the landscape and regional cultural context, echoing the plot structure and verticality of the forests to develop the shape and aesthetically integrate the building.
The remote location of the site, combined with an unusually large energy demand is met with a net zero energy goal and a water saving concept, based on features such as a ground source heating and cooling, a solar wall to temper outside ventilation air, a ground-coupled heat pump, peaking bio-diesel boilers, LED lights, and lighting control systems to reduce fossil fuel consumption. Materials are selected for durability, appropriateness, recycled content and regional production. The palette is minimized for design continuity and efficiency in purchasing. Low-VOC, formaldehyde-free, non-allergenic products resistant to mold, mildew and fungi are selected. The exterior envelope consists of recycled aluminum, precast concrete and coated low-e insulated glass.